August 23, 2015 – Hazy, 80 degrees
Miles Today: 79
Miles to Date: 6,149
States to Date: 22
The ride out of Leavenworth and up Stevens Pass is beautiful and strenuous, but at this point a 4,000 foot pass is not too difficult. I reached the summit by eleven.
Unfortunately, the path down proved much more challenging. US. Route 2 west into Seattle is like a country road, with narrow bridges and tight shoulders. The traffic out of the mountains on a Sunday afternoon was heavy and none too happy about the cyclists in their midst. I was very cautious, pulled over to let traffic pass many times, and signaled when I had to ease into the lane at constrictions. Still, I got horns and hollers. I was mighty pleased to pull into La Hacienda in Gold Bar for a long lunch.
I got off US 2 at Sultan and pedaled a gorgeous side road to my warmshowers host. That’s when reality finally sunk in: I have left the mountains behind and am in the incredible rainforest of the Pacific Northwest.
Brian, another long distance cyclist staying with the same host, let me into a spectacular vertical house deep in the woods. Turns out our hosts had to go out, so Brian and I spent the evening together and turned in early. Maybe I’ll meet the owners in the morning…